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**Giveaway** Degrees of Love by Lisa Slaback **Review**
Book Title: Degrees of Love: A Novel by Lisa Slabach
Category: Adult Fiction, 344 pages
Genre: Women's Fiction
Release date: Dec 1, 2017
Tour dates: Jan 3 to 31, 2017
Content Rating: PG-13 + M (Adult themes including infidelity, occasional F-word, non-explicit sex scenes)
At thirty-six, Susan Sinclair has it all. She's just been promoted to Senior Vice President of Mobile Banking at her firm, a prestigious position bringing fresh creative challenges and a hefty salary increase. Like the shiny new BMW in the driveway of the Silicon Valley home she shares with her husband, Matt, and their two beautiful boys, Susan exudes confidence and style.
Yet despite her success in juggling the roles of wife, mother, and businesswoman, Susan struggles with a secret dissatisfaction. Matt's work in cutting-edge computer research pays less than her job, and with each advance in her career, he has grown more distant. But Matt refuses to admit there is a problem, and Susan forces herself to play along, determined to give her boys the close-knit family life she never had.
Then she meets her new boss, Reese Kirkpatrick. Working and traveling together, she and Reese become a crackerjack team, but little by little, pleasure mixes with business. For the first time in a long time—maybe ever—Susan feels seen and appreciated for who she is. Certain she would never allow their friendship to cross the line, Susan lets herself stray dangerously close to the edge.
A moment of weakness changes everything. Now, unable to stomach the façade her marriage has become yet unwilling to decimate her family by moving forward with Reese, Susan faces a choice that could cost her everything—including her children . . . but possibly bring her more than she can dream.
I knew I would be reading a story about a marriage that gets impacted by an indiscretion. But I was so interested in how the author would work the heartbreak of cheating into a non cliche story.
This story deals with the complexities of marriage; the good and bad. She loves her husband, adores her kids, and is happy with their life. However, she has been dealing with the fact that her and her husband don't connect on an intimate or emotional level anymore. The passion seems deflated and the relationship seems mundane. As her career goes up the ladder, her husband seems more distant, not including her in plans, giving her minimal and passionless one-on-one time. She doesn't start looking elsewhere for an affair, which is the huge misconception within the story. That doesn't make her choice right or justified. However, this story shows the poignant, realistic, bitter, and heartbreaking side of what people do not like to consider.
The author did such a good job in writing a realistic and insightful story about the intricacies that are within a marriage and relationship between a husband and wife. I completely enjoyed this book (and look forward to her next!) and would recommend this read.
When I tell people I write Women’s Fiction, most
people are uncertain about what that means.Two seconds later they might introduce me by saying, “This is Lisa.She writes Chick Lit,” or “This is Lisa.She’s a Romance writer.” On occasion, I have even been described as
someone who writes women’s pornography, which really slays me since my stories
don’t contain graphic sex scenes.
So what exactly is Women’s Fiction?How does the category differentiate from
other genres that are targeted toward women?The Women’s Fiction Writers Association states, “Our stories may have
romance. Or they may not. They could be contemporary. Or historical. But what binds us together is the focus on the
main character’s emotional journey.”
I respectfully beg to differ because an “emotional
journey” is not exclusive to any one genre and therefore, is too broad of a
definition.In my humble opinion, in
addition to the emotional journey, it must be about a uniquely female experience
and told from a women’s perspective.Although the story can be told with humor, Women’s Fiction doesn’t have
the quirky, lightheartedness associated with Chick Lit, nor is the coming
together of two people the main conflict as it is the Romance genre.
This isn’t to say men can’t or shouldn’t write or read
the genre.In many ways, classics such
as Madame Bovary, Anna Karina, and Tess of the D’Urbervilles could be
categorized as Women’s Fiction.The
question really should be why bother trying to define and categorize a work
into a particular box?Why not simply
call a book a work of fiction?
The publishing world did just that before the
introduction of computers and the internet.Now there are literally millions and millions of titles available on
Amazon alone. (I’ve seen rankings as high as eighteen million, which means there
have to be at least eighteen million titles listed.)Tagging a book in a specific genre with
subcategories and keywords has become necessary for buyers to wade through the
sheer number of choices to find the perfect read.
At the end of the day, “Women’s Fiction” doesn’t mean
male readers need not bother or that there won’t be any romance or lack humor.All it means is that the reader should expect
a story about a woman (or women) going on an emotional journey to come to terms
with a distinctively female dilemma.
Do you agree or disagree?
Praise for Degrees of Love:
"Slabach crafts a relatable, heartbreakingly real story that will no doubt resonate with those at a similar station in life: women who love their families yet yearn for just a little more—to feel wanted rather than needed, to feel passion rather than complacency. In engaging prose and through skillful storytelling, Slabach captivates with an all-too-familiar story that raises questions with no easy answers."
- Kirkus Reviews (Starred Review)
"This does not read like a debut author’s book. Slabach shows herself to be adept at portraying the complex emotions of the human condition. Her characters live and breathe on the page in a way that every author strives for, but few actually manage. Susan’s struggles ring true, and the way she handles everything makes her a very likable and relatable character."
- Sarah Perry, San Francisco Book Review, 5 Stars
"Profound, heart wrenching and very emotional, it is hard to believe that Degrees of Love is a debut novel by Lisa Slabach. This is one of the best novels I have read this year."
Degrees of Love is Lisa Slabach’s debut novel. She is currently working on her third full-length manuscript and a collection of short stories inspired by her experiences growing up in a small farm community in Washington’s Yakima Valley. In addition to writing, Lisa works for a Fortune 500 Company, leading a sales team in the financial industry. She currently resides in Northern California with her husband and has two daughters, who are both pursuing careers in film. In her free time, she enjoys drinking wine with friends and cooking in her pink kitchen.